Cuisine AuntDai, delivery or not?

Once the weather in Montreal got cold, people around Cuisine AuntDai always ask one question, does AuntDai do delivery?

The question has been in the air since the beginning of the journey of Cuisine AuntDai from Febuary 2014. Cote-des-Neiges looks like a natural place for restaurants to do delivery, most of our neighbor restaurants have been doing just that.

To get delivery more convincing, we are a Chinese restaurant in Montreal, how many of them don’t do delivery?

Here are our calculations on whether doing delivery, pros and cons as usual.

For customers, pros:

If you live nearby, weather is rough and you want some real delicious Chinese food, for sure you don’t want venture into snow storm or chilly wind, calling for a delivery from your own comfortable room is a best choice.

For customers, cons:

If you really really want some real real Chinese food, delivery is not your best choice and here is why. For most Chinese dishes, it tastes best when it’s fresh out of the wok, steaming hot. Lukewarm is not a friend of Chinese food. Even we have the food delivered right after the it’s ready from the kitchen it will take about 10 minutes to get your table. If a delivery person is not in place right after the food is ready, it will take longer, the food will lose its best taste for sure.

For the restaurant, pros:

More revenue for sure plus the exposure to the people around this neighborhood, more people knowing AuntDai will bring more customers. A lot of our customers coming to the restaurant have shared this idea with us.

For the restaurant, cons:

After the delivery, the food won’t be very hot anymore and won’t be as tasty as it should be. The customers may not appreciate the real taste of our food which would shadow a less favorable image about Cuisine AuntDai.

Also, another point which could be easily overlooked is the fact that the delivery will increase the workload in the kitchen and potentially will lower the quality of the food given the same level of kitchen management effort. For us, we focus on the customers coming to the restaurant and take care of the quality of food and service.

It’s been more than nine months since we opened our door in Febuary 2014, facing lots of temptations of changing directions or plans, we stay on the course and focus on the service and quality. We want people enjoy our real Chinese food and the beautiful Chinese cuisine culture, that’s our mission.

Customers are very welcomed to leave us some comments, please visit our website www.auntdai.com.

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Cuisine AuntDai have Youtube videos to introduce the dishes on the menu

It’s well know to everybody that it’s very difficult if not impossible to translate Chinese dish names into English or French. As an owner of a Chinese restaurant, this has been in my mind from the very beginning of Cuisine AuntDai since we serve authentic Chinese food here. Often times, our waitress will have to spend a lot of time explaining dishes to customers and to be fair to our customers, they have to guess what the dishes would taste like.

To address this very issue, we started shooting Youtube videos for our dishes on the menu. We asked our volunteer customers to record videos. From these videos, you can see how it looks not only by still pictures, also you will know how they taste from the narratives.

You can find these video links on the “online menu” section of the website http://www.auntdai.com. The individual video is under each of the dish on the menu.

Also, you can find the direct link of the playlist on Youtube.

Right now, we have videos for 10 dishes and they are in English, later on will complete all the dishes on the menu. Also, we will have them in French too.

What is Chinese way of eating in a Chinese restaurant?

In Montreal you can find a lot of Chinese restaurants but how many of them are serving authentic Chinese food? Some Chinese restaurants serve North American version of Chinese dishes like General Tao Chicken and Orange Beef. If you want to try the “real” authentic Chinese food you need to follow Chinese folks because they are always trying to find good real authentic cuisine.
If you have tried some Chinese food already you can take a step further for some authentic Chinese dishes. Follow us and you will learn how to order and enjoy authentic Chinese food.
Before all, you need to know that having a meal for Chinese people is like having an event and is about sharing a moment with friends and/or family. For example, Chinese people used the time of a meal to have serious talks. For a group of four people, Chinese people would usually order four or five different dishes to share with everybody. Instead of having individual portion, everybody would share the four or five dishes with steam rice, stir fry rice or noodle as a side dish. This way of dining has been in Chinese cuisine traditions for thousands of years.
As utensils, chopsticks and a bowl (of rice) are a must have. Traditionally people would use the same chopsticks to eat their food and pick food from the share dish plate to their own bowl. For hygiene purposes that lifestyle has changed and nowadays, in China, more and more restaurants provide a serving spoon or serving chopsticks per share dish.
In some Chinese provinces especially in the south, people used to drink soup before having the main course. Recently this tradition has spread all over China.
Chinese food takes pride on the perfect cooking of the chef. By theory, the flavor and taste of the dish should be the best coming out of the chef’s skills. So no extra sauce is needed when the food is served. You are not supposed to add sauce; otherwise it is kind of a slight to the chef. Also, if you add your own sauce, the flavor will unbalance and presentation will be ruined.
Since for the same dish, the cooking of different chefs may produce different flavor, we recommend our customers to taste our chef’s cooking mastery without adding sauce.
For generations Chinese people used to drink liquor called Bai Jiu along with their meal. However, since globalization, at Chinese people’s dining table, you will often see wine or beer instead of Bai Jiu. In Montreal, you will barely see any Chinese liquor in SAQ, if you do they will be very expensive. At Cuisine AuntDai you can bring your own wine and beer since we have the license.
For some customers, the ingredients in Chinese dishes are a concern since Chinese cooking uses lots of different spices. The main concerns are spicy dishes, peanut butter, starch, and MSG. At Cuisine AuntDai, we do not use MSG at all. To address all these concerns, Cuisine AuntDai discloses all ingredients used for each dish, as well as their recipe. You will find all the information at the website http://www.auntdai.com.
Lastly, fortune cookie is an invention of North America! In China, most restaurants do not offer any fortune cookies, so do Cuisine AuntDai. We have full respect for Chinese food and ensure that our customers will enjoy authentic Chinese food and priceless Chinese cuisine tradition.

This article was originally posted on http://www.auntdai.com/en/

How do we get words to our customers

Today, Tuesday November 4th, Cuisine Auntdai restaurant is closed to do some kitchen maintenance. In order to let people know the restaurant will be closed for one day, we posted on our Facebook page and have the latest update on our website. Since we are a chinese restaurant, we have a lot of Chinese customers as well, so wechat group is almost a must, we have the words about today’s closure on wechat group as well.

So I think customers probably will get the news already.

Today, we are doing some work in the kitchen, wholeday, from 7AM to probably 11PM, right now it’s almost 7PM, I am taking a break to write this article.

While I am sitting in the front, I see some customers come to door and find the handwritten notes on the door and turned away, also, our LED display is showing “Fermé Aujourd’hui Ouvert demain”. Obviously, some customers are not getting our updates. We have a long way to go to promote our website and Facebook page.

Here is our website, http://www.auntdai.com, you can find our latest update and full menu online, also online reservation is available.

Our Facebook page link is on the right top corner of the website. Or you can click the link directly:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cuisine-Auntdai/709936439039680?ref=hl

I have family members to help me do the kitchen cleanup. To run a Chinese restaurant in Montreal is not a easy task, how to keep the kitchen clean like our home kitchen is a challenge as well. We ask our kitchen staff to do cleanup and once a while, we will close the restaurant for a full day to do a thorough cleanup and maintenance.

I am exhausted now. But when I look at the shining countertops, it’s like a reward.

Hope people in Montreal will appreciate the authentic real Chinese food we serve at Cuisine Auntdai because we pay attention to details and focus on quality for food and service and strive to provide our customers the best dining experience possible. We take pride in make real Chinese food.

Ok, get back to the work or I have to stay really late.

Cuisine AuntDai is on Youtube

A lot of folks in Montreal like Chinese food as globalization is on it’s way of full fledge. But some of them stop short at only knowing General Tao chicken, Orange beef, some noodles and dumplings. Don’t get me wrong, these are Chinese food as well but some of them are the inventions from Califonia, at Cuisine AuntDai we provide these dishes as well. But if you want further to discover the whole offer from Chinese food, you may need to know a lot more than them so you won’t miss out some real authentic Chinese food. Cuisine AuntDai wants to do just that. Here you can some more than 20 different authentic Chinese dishes and some of them you may never hear of and that’s why we shoot some videos to give you some ideas from a customer’s perspective.

We are still in the process of shooting menu introduction videos and till today, we have videos for five dishes already.

here are they on the Youtube playlist.

also, we shot some video about kitchen preparing:

The beginning of a Chinese restaurant in Montreal

Why did we call the restaurant “Aunt Dai”? Let this true story unfold…

In 2011, my friend Dai’s parents came to visit from China. One day, they did some cooking at home and invited my wife over to eat. Later that night, when I tried the “bo bing” (thin pancake) which my wife brought back, my heart was melted by the exquisite taste of it. I said to my wife: “this “bo bing” is so delicious!”

The following night, I went to my friend Dai’s house to learn how to make this famous “bo bing” from his mother, which I call Aunt Dai. She was very happy to show me how to make it step by step and this authentic hand-making process deeply touched me. Later, after continuous practice, I could practically make the “bo bing” independently. All my friends really enjoyed the ‘’bo bing’’ I made.

In order to show my respect and to honor Aunt Dai, I registered the domain name http://www.auntdai.com. I told her, if one day I were to open a Chinese restaurant in Montreal, I would use the name “Aunt Dai”.

Later, I really decided to start this business adventure. I got the approval from Aunt Dai to use her photo. An artist friend of mine drew a sketch based on her photo as the logo of the restaurant and a Chinese calligrapher wrote “Aunt Dai” in Chinese as a part of the logo.

On February 5th, 2014, the restaurant is officially opened. We want our customers to appreciate our service and to truly appreciate Chinese cuisine in Montreal. Aunt Dai is still in China right now; therefore she cannot participate in the daily operation of the restaurant. It is a pity that we cannot provide to our customers her “bo bing”. However, this restaurant was really inspired by her, so we decided that Aunt Dai’s family members could enjoy free food and service at our restaurant forever.

If Aunt Dai comes to visit Montreal next time, we will invite her to the restaurant to demonstrate the “bo bing” making process and lucky friends will have the opportunity to taste Aunt Dai’s handmade “bo bing”.

 

http://www.auntdai.com